Former WESTLIFE star BRYAN McFADDEN has signed a $3.6 million (GBP2 million) solo record deal - despite claiming he wanted to spend more time with his family.

The Irish singer, 23, who quit the group in March (04), has been snapped up by a new label headed by music veteran RICHARD GRIFFITHS - in a move to turn McFadden into the next Robbie Williams.

A source says, "Bryan has thought long and hard about signing the deal.

"He knows that people will wonder why he's so keen to get back into the gruelling life of a pop star after saying he wanted to take a step back and spend time with his wife KERRY, and daughters MOLLY and LILY-SUE.

"But Kerry's had so much success in her own right after winning I'M A CELEBRITY... Get Me Out Of Here! that he felt a little bit in the shade.

"He realised how much music means to him."

11/07/2004 10:35